On a social media post today Meadville City councilwoman Autumn Vogel said "there's not a whole lot of reasons for city council to be chipper this budget season. We are facing some tough decisions in passing a balanced budget for 2021. We can no longer afford to kick the can down the road. We've got to make some big changes."
The city's proposed budget comes up just shy $700,000 short for 2021.
Vogel and others are reaching out looking for community input on how to proceed. Though it isn't an official survey they are hoping by hearing the will of the people they might gain a better understanding how to proceed. "I hope it helps to share the nature of the tough decisions ahead and allows us to pick the brains of the creative, thoughtful, scrappy constituency that is Meadville, Pennsylvania," Vogel wrote. In a phone conversation Vogel added the importance of understanding citizen's priorities and hopes the survey serves as a learning tool for both council and Meadvillians. She said her hope is more people get involved in local governing and participate in ways they can.
She added that she hopes the survey males it easier for people to get involved. "It allows people to engage and weigh in from where they are," noting not everyone can make the meeting times. This survey at least allows them to have a voice and offer input she said.
"I hope everyone takes the time to complete the survey. Unfortunately some still feel that their voices are not heard." councilman Larry McKnight added in a post comment. "We need you to continue to make your concerns, ideas and suggestions heard. This is your town too."
The next public hearing is Nov. 18 at 5:45 p.m. at city hall.